JAG HUNTER here:

Only eighteen days following the start of OPERATION TORCH, whereupon my dad–Navy Doctor, Lieutenant Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr. and his shipmates in USS COLE (DD – 155) survived a suicide amphibious assault into the French Moroccan city of Safi, the movie CASABLANCA splashed on to the silver screen for the first time.

CASABLANCA, which was rushed out several months before its originally planned 1943 release, premiered in New York City on Thanksgiving Day, 1942. The Hollywood reporter raved: ‘Here is a drama that lifts you right out of your seat.’ The New York Times called it ‘highly entertaining and inspiring…a picture which makes the spine tingle and the heart leap.’

“As near and dear to the heart as CASABLANCA is today, audiences in ’42 had an especially unique perspective. The world was embroiled in desperate conflict as the Nazi regime spread its savage poison across Europe, and the events on the screen mirrored events on the global stage. As Variety noted: ‘By curious quirk of fortune, history-making caught up to this picture set against a background of French Morocco, and its timeliness assures big box-office reception. Only a few days ago, world interest rested in the town of Casablanca, with the landing of Allied forces there and bare mention of the name still excites the imagination.’ “

(Courtesy of MGM and Turner Entertainment)


26 November 1942 Thanksgiving Day Menu aboard

USS AUGUSTA (CA – 31)

(Assigned to OPERATION TORCH with USS COLE and USS BERNADOU)

MENU

Cream of Tomato Soup a la Casablanca
Fruit Cocktail         	 Saltines
Chicken and Turkey en Casserole a la Hewitt
Baked Spiced Spam a la Capitaine de Vaisseau
Giblet Gravy           Cherry Dressing
Buttered Asparagus Tips a la Fedala
Chantilly Potatoes a la Patton
Buttered June Peas de Safi       Scalloped Tomatoes
Cranberry Sauce
Hot Parker Rolls du Lyautey
Butter         Jam
Apple Pie a la Michelier        Strawberry Ice Cream
Mixed Nuts du Jean Bart
Sweet Pickles          Ripe Olives
Cigars        Cigarettes
Cafe Noir  


THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY
WASHINGTON

The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the PRESIDENTIAL UNIT CITATION to the

UNITED STATES SHIP COLE

for service as set forth in the following

CITATION:

“For outstanding performance as guide for the first wave of landing boats in the attack on Safi, French Morocco, November 8, 1942. Under crossfire from enemy coast defense batteries and machine gun emplacements, the COLE, proceeding through a narrow harbor entrance in total darkness, effectively countered hostile opposition, disembarked a company of U. S. Army assault troops, and supported their attack by accurate fire from her main battery. Her distinctive fulfillment of a difficult and hazardous mission contributed materially to the victorious achievement of the Southern Attack Group.”

For the President

/s/ Frank Knox
Secretary of the Navy

~~~~~~~~~~

One sailor in USS COLE was shot through the lungs during the assault. My dad stitched up and treated his wounded shipmate who survived to enjoy his 1942 Thanksgiving dinner. The man reported to full shipboard duty a month later.

Commander Greg Palmer, my dad’s skipper, was awarded the Navy Cross for his performance of duty during OPERATION TORCH.

My dad was awarded the Bronze Star with with a Combat “V” for valor; the highest combination for valor awarded to medical officers performing as doctors under fire while engaged with an enemy force.

Captain Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr, Medical Corps, United States Navy wearing the Bronze Star with “V” for performance of duty during OPERATION TORCH – the assault into CASABLANCA

READ MORE HERE!

- The Post & Email - http://www.thepostemail.com 

SCARS AND STRIPES!

Posted By Sharon Rondeau On Tuesday, September 17, 2013 @ 10:27 AM In National 2 Comments

 

by Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III, ©2013

September 17, 2013

Admiral Zlatoper,

Rear Admiral John W. Bitoff, working closely and primarily with his staff JAG officer, Timothy William Zeller, began an unceasing flogging of me and what once was my family in 1989.

Bitoff and Zeller swore out false changes and advanced them against me in a court-martial that both men completely controlled and manipulated.

Bitoff and Zeller assigned co-worker staff officers into the court-martial panel to ensure and repeat a guilty verdict Bitoff had already clandestinely ordered.

Bitoff and Zeller knew these officers to be hostile in their intent toward me, officers who had engaged with me in severely acrimonious arguments regarding administrative and operational matters attendant to the USS MARS (AFS–1), to which I was assigned as the executive officer in that afloat command. One officer sitting on my court-martial panel, Lieutenant Commander Steve Letchworth, was a prominent player in Bitoff’s star-chamber court-martial.

Without my knowledge, Bitoff and Zeller hand-picked my defense attorney, an officer on the Judge Advocate General Corps named Kevin Martis “Andy” Anderson. Anderson held the grade of captain, United States Marine Corps.

Anderson, another key figure in the rigged disciplinary hearing, worked closely with Bitoff and Zeller behind my back.

The court-martial hearing ran from 2–5 April 1990.

Zeller wrote and Bitoff signed out a letter of reprimand dated 7 June 1990.

On 17 July 1990, USMC Captain “Andy” Anderson authored, created, printed out and signed what Bitoff, Zeller and Anderson intended to become my “confession.”

Anderson clumsily attempted a simulation of my name putting felt-tip pen to paper in the misspelling and forgery of my name.  CERTIFIED COPY OF THE FORGERY – 17 July 1990

I discovered the forgery in July or August of 1992.

I reported the forgery immediately to appropriate law enforcement authorities at the time, and ever since. The forgery was widely reported to the Navy Secretary, Navy Judge Advocate General Rick Grant, and throughout a wide width of Navy commands and senior military governors.

As Bitoff’s villainous, rigged court-martial was becoming a matter of focused attention in 1993 and 1994, you personally used the “confession,” as Bitoff, Zeller and Anderson intended, to deflect, if not outright quash, any directed inspection of my court-martial.

The Navy, as I’m sure you’ll remember, was already suffering from thousands of pounds per square inch of pressure from the Tailhook scandal, the turret #2 explosion aboard USS IOWA and from other senior leadership failures, some of which were criminal in nature.

On 28 April 1994, you used the forged confession as Bitoff, Zeller and Anderson wanted it to be used…that is, as my confession.

Passing off a known forgery as an authentic document is just as much a crime of forgery as, in this instance specifically, that moment in which Captain Anderson fumbled in applying my name to the letter of reprimand response.

There were so many other lies you joined with Bitoff & Company in repeating.

CNO Mike Boorda, VCNO Stan Arthur and Navy TJAG Grant were right there with you, criminals in command, command racketeers shoulder-to-shoulder.

You continue to work in conspiracy with so many others to maintain a wrongful federal conviction on my back undisturbed. Incumbents CNO Greenert and Navy-Marine Corps TJAG DeRenzi are amongst your criminal clique.

You, sir, are a criminal and a liar.

You are caught.

Still the flogging, the scourge never ends.

Consider carefully, on this Constitution Day, as you read this, the damage and destruction you and others have wrought upon our Constitution in violent disobedience and perjury to your oaths.

For you and me, it’s a day of reckoning. It’s a day for confrontation! I’m calling you out. It’s time to engage.

I’ve come to learn firsthand how greed for rank and power propels and justifies the whipping beatings of subordinates. I can report in the first person how arrogance, avarice for rank and power, and pride serve as an antidote for shame.

President Fillmore abolished the practice of flogging in the Army and Navy 163 years ago on 28 September 1850, but you give the best evidence that the inhumane practice is alive and well in America today.

As I look up through blood, sweat and tears, I see you plainly standing there, smiling, a cat-of-nine-tails held in your hand resting between successive beatings now ranging over a course of nearly the past quarter-century.

This is about a matter of accountability, sir.

This is personal. Very deeply personal.

So knock yourself out. BE PROUD AS YOU CAN BE! You’re offered here a chance to show off with your admiral and general colleagues just to what levels of arrogance, obnoxiousness, and outlawry you’re able to ascend.

Beginning on 27 April 1994, then pulling an all-nighter with staff subordinates into 28 April, Rick Grant and you hammered away earnestly and urgently on a clandestine written talking points memo and policy statement. It’s attached.  ZLATOPER LETTER OF 28 APRIL 1994

Your secret written work was to be relied upon as a foundation in further public utterances made to media reporters which Grant and you feared were paying closer and closer attention to the common practice of flag officers controlling and rigging federal military disciplinary hearings commonly known as courts-martial.

In the memo, Grant and you drew heavily upon work product that came from just such a rigged court-martial, the court-martial Rear Admiral John Bitoff and his staff officers created, conducted and controlled in 1989-1990.

The court-martial we’re talking about is mine.

Press overtures regarding the conduct of military discipline hearings had become more and more aggressive in the wake of the Tailhook scandal wherein 35 flag officers were involved, but no courts-martial resulted. When Bitoff’s court-martial showed itself on the horizon in early 1994, threatening to come more clearly in view, Grant and you moved quickly to neutralize the sort of disclosures you both knew were lurking.

One disclosure lurking was a bogus confession bearing an attempted simulation of my name.

Another revelation sinisterly loitering about was the participation of Steve Letchworth on my court-martial panel.

Then there came home to roost the Zeller-Bitoff 1989 turkey waddling about and squawking loudly, unable to fly away.

Bob Kihune, David Bennett, Richard Steward and Glenn Gonzalez took care of the early and heavy shovel-ready work. The four men buried Letchworth alive down deep.

Then the four men axed off the head of the turkey, plucked it, cooked it and feasted while the meat was warm.

In April 1994 Grant and you were handed the frozen cold leftovers.

The Zlatoper-Grant policy memo to Mike Boorda and Stan Arthur relied upon Steve Letchworth and the Bitoff-Zeller turkey remaining safely dead and buried.

Arrogance and pride blinded all of you to the fact that even cold (and cold-blooded) murder cases can leave behind enough proofs and evidences leading to satisfactory resolution.

Arrogance and pride are powerful and dangerous emotions. Driving this observation home, indulge me as I briefly recount why Bitoff had me court-martialed. You play a personal and crucial role in these matters presently. It’s important that we both understand each other and engage.

The terrorist group November 17 assassinated Navy Captain William Edward Nordeen in a vicious car bomb attack in Athens, Greece on 28 June 1988.

My commanding officer on the USS MARS at the time was Michael Brent Nordeen.

Bill and Mike Nordeen are brothers.

Bitoff personally accused me of stealing MWR monies used to send a continent of the USS MARS family to the funeral of Navy Captain William Edward Nordeen.

John Bitoff was an arrogant and prideful man. My court-martial was the product of Bitoff’s unstable emotional vendetta. Bitoff’s accusations against me regarding Morale, Welfare and Recreation funds about USS MARS (AFS – 1) were ridiculous.

Bitoff had been a Bill Crowe protégé for many years. Bitoff was every bit the political animal Crowe was. Bitoff served under Crowe in three different assignments as his “Number 1,” either executive officer or executive assistant.

Nebraska Senator Bob Kerrey furiously fumed during the height of the earl 1990’s Tailhook scandal, “I believe there is a great power in having just one person shout No! as loud as hell in the midst of a room full of people going in the other direction.”

Bitoff forced me out of the naval service because of my character. Plain and direct. I was one of those guys who was standing in the room shouting “NO!” Bitoff used the court-martial process to punish me, using me as an object lesson throughout the fleet.

So did you! So did others in the admirals and generals’ club!

One-star Rear Admiral John W. Bitoff aggressively engaged in my character assassination using a court-martial process that runs from 1 September 1989 to this very day.

I knew at the very beginning that John Bitoff’s actions were in service to a malicious vendetta. I told Bitoff I knew his was a “kangaroo court,” immoral, malicious, unfair and a stark demonstration of poor leadership. I’ve not stopped telling people in the succeeding twenty-four years. I persevere. I persist.

I point to four men who are primarily, as I describe them, criminals in command or command racketeers.

The four men are Rear Admiral Bitoff (former commander, Combat Logistics Group 1), Bitoff’s staff JAG, Timothy William Zeller (then in the grade of Lieutenant, since promoting to full commander), former Captain of Marines Kevin Martis “Andy” Anderson, the man who Bitoff hand-picked as my defense counsel, and two-star Rear Admiral Harold Eric “Rick” Grant, former Judge Advocate General to the Navy and Marine Corps.

Bitoff, Zeller and Grant are all in retirement. Anderson left the Marine Corps in the early ‘90s and is currently a senior deputy prosecuting attorney for the County of Kitsap, Washington State.

Bitoff, Zeller and Anderson are chief engineers to the illicit court-martial proper. Grant is more culpable and more responsible than any other uniformed or civilian military governor in covering up what’s become the most reviewed, most troublesome and most talked-about court-martial in American history.

There remains no question whatsoever that my court-martial was rigged from stem to stern. Bitoff, Zeller, Anderson and Grant are now irrefutably caught in their villainous expedition.

One question for us today is, “What is my wrongful federal conviction, wrought at the hands of a malicious bad actor and political animal, to stand for?”

What stands out as the salient criminal act in Bitoff’s outlawry is a criminal instrument bearing my forged and misspelled name. It is a 17 July 1990 response to Bitoff’s 7 June 1990 letter of reprimand to me.

I discovered the Bitoff-Zeller forgery sometime in July or August 1992, about two years before your April 1994 missive to Boorda and Arthur.

I reported the bogus writing immediately as a criminal act targeting me.

At first I thought Bitoff’s staff JAG Zeller was the culprit who put pen to paper under Bitoff’s command.

Suspicions regarding Bitoff and Zeller’s criminality were confirmed and heightened one year later when on 2 July 1993, a first-class petty officer legalman assigned to the Oakland-based supply ship staff dropped a dime on both men.

Zeller’s holiday note to Bitoff was the first of a flurry of outrageously illegal correspondences and conversations carried out behind their curtain.

Zeller’s memos added to the still-growing body of evidence incriminating Bitoff, Anderson, Grant, Zeller himself and their protectors.

Running parallel to growing evidence regarding Bitoff’s rigged court-martial was Derek Vander Schaaf’s report about the criminal expedition involving tens of Navy-Marine Corps flag officers, other senior military governors and lesser-ranking civilian and uniformed officers.

In mid-April 1993, delayed for months awaiting a new Navy Secretary, Vander Schaaf released an inch-thick report about the Navy’s “Tailhook” scandal, recognized as the most serious in decades. Vander Schaaf publicly reported that 51 Navy officers lied to Defense Department investigators and that “several hundred” others actively obstructed the investigation.

Derek J. Vander Schaaf’s report said the conduct at the “Tailhook” aviators’ annual cultural celebration was so outrageous over so many years that it raised “serious questions about the senior leadership of the Navy.”

The report named the 35 admirals and generals in wrongdoing. Vander Schaaf commiserated about the extraordinary “stonewalling” he’d encountered during his investigation.

My report followed on 23 September 1993.

My 17-page criminal complaint was filed with Navy Secretary John Dalton, Admiral Charles Larson as Commander, Pacific Command; Vice Admiral David Robinson as Commander, Naval Surface Forces Pacific Fleet; Rear Admiral Vern Clark as Commander, Cruiser Destroyer 3; Rear Admiral Merrill Wythe Ruck as Commander, Naval Base, San Francisco and Commander, Combat Logistics Group 1; Captain John Payne, my skipper in USS CARL VINSON, and my Executive Officer, Captain Robert “Rat” Willard.

My report was also hand-delivered to NCIS Special Agent Mark Sakrada, special agent in charge at the NCIS office collocated with headquarters Commander Naval Base San Francisco aboard Naval Station Treasure Island.

Senior naval officers thwarted any attempts to publicly release Zeller’s 1989 Thanksgiving Day missive to Bitoff for fully a year. The requests for release made by Washington State Rep. Norm Dicks and Senator Patty Murray were denied.

I was denied.

At the same moment in time, four-star Admiral Frank B. Kelso moved up his retirement date under ever-increasing pressures due to an unceasing torrent of disclosures regarding the outrageous and alleged criminal conduct of 35 admirals and generals at the September 1991 Las Vegas “Tailhook” convention that included accusations naming Kelso personally.

Not missed by any observer was that the military discipline system, the court-martial system, under tight control as a function of command, did not touch any of the “Tailhook”-connected flag officer involvement and criminal misconduct.

It was in this environment, in the immediate aftermath of Tailhook, that the interest of renowned military correspondent and reporter Ed Offley was drawn and piqued regarding my case. The document record, seen and unseen, giving evidence of Rear Admiral John Bitoff’s criminal escapades, was overwhelming. Ed and I began a series of regular interview meetings and phone conversations whereupon I laid out the document record as it existed and was expanding at that time.

Into this environment you eventually showed up.

Not yet in physical possession of Zeller’s incriminating 1989 Thanksgiving Day memo, there was the daily increasing and already immense collection of documentary evidence amassed proving Bitoff’s command racketeering in cooperation with Navy TJAG Rick Grant.

With Tailhook still a burning issue in the press, Congressman Norm Dicks wrote to Navy Secretary John Dalton on 10 January 1994 requesting Dalton personally examine my proofs and evidences regarding Bitoff & Company’s outlaw rampages in the exercise of command influence.

SECNAV Dalton punted to Navy TJAG Rick Grant. In a letter to Dicks dated 9 March 1994, while sitting on Zeller’s Thanksgiving Day memo and the forgery of my name, Grant’s response to Dicks was essentially, “Go away, you’re bothering me.”

Norm Dicks called for reinforcements. Senior U.S. senator in 1994 Slade Gorton answered the call.

Federal legislators Dicks and Gorton are both attorneys trained and experienced in the law. Slade Gorton is a former Air Force JAG.

Former U.S. Senator Slade Gorton served as both junior and senior senators from Washington State at different times. A graduate of Columbia Law School, he also served as Washington’s attorney general during the 1960s.

Jointly, Rep. Norm Dicks and Senator Slade Gorton wrote to Navy Secretary John Dalton in a letter dated 15 April 1994 naming Rick Grant as “an interested party in [Lieutenant Commander Fitzpatrick’s] case which therefore [makes] it inappropriate for [Grant to respond].”

Viewed another way, Rick Grant’s name was now added to the list of Tailhook flag officers going to abuses of power and criminal misconduct.

Dicks and Gorton pleaded with SECNAV Dalton himself to review [Fitzpatrick’s] case and provide their offices with a comprehensive evaluation of my allegations. Dicks and Gorton said again they wanted a new court-martial convened, manned by an independent panel to hear my case, absent Bitoff’s and Grant’s illegal influence.

One week after Dicks’ and Gorton’s letter to Dalton was electronically transmitted and mailed, Ed Offley published his article in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer (Thursday, 21 April 1994). Offley’s report was made available in that day’s edition of the Pentagon’s Early Bird.

Another Tailhook was in the mix, only it’s bigger than Tailhook.

Two days later, on Saturday, 23 April 1994, four-star Admiral Mike Boorda relieved Frank B. Kelso as Chief of Naval Operations. Kelso stepped down from his job months early under extraordinary pressure because of the Tailhook scandal and other embarrassments including Offley’s article published just two days before. The no-notice change of command ceremony was held aboard a cloistered Naval Academy reservation, in Smoke Hall, in the bowels of Bancroft Hall, with no press allowed.

Four days later, the Seattle P-I’s editorial board published an editorial dated Wednesday, 27 April, entitled, “naval probe [is] needed in [Fitzpatrick’s] discipline. This editorial also made it into print for flag officer review; your review, for instance, in that morning’s Early Bird.

Into the frenzied fracas bravely charged Ronald Joseph “Zap” Zlatoper, (then) three-star Admiral, Chief of Naval Personnel and Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (Manpower, Personnel, Training & Education).

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer’s 27 April editorial created a frenetic atmosphere, to be sure. I can see it. I can hear it. I can feel it right now. Folks assigned to your Bureau of Naval Personnel and Rear Admiral Grant’s JAG office sure enough pulled all-nighters to cobble together the memo you sent to CNO Boorda and VCNO Arthur the next day (28 April).

You generously quoted, and consequently own the forgery of my name Bitoff and his buddies inserted into the official court-martial record as my confession.

Bitoff’s design in ordering the creation and entry of the bogus, forged confession into the court-martial record was to deflect serious attention away from any post-trial examination or scrutiny my case might enjoy. Bitoff found it necessary as well to render false charges which he and his gang made against me to appear meritorious and righteous.

Rick Grant is the first uniformed officer known to have used the counterfeit confession as Bitoff and his staff officers intended it to be used.

You, sir, are the second.

I can attest with solid assurance that you and Grant knew what you were doing and were possessed of the necessary criminal intent in the conduct of your affairs.

In this I rely upon my observations and experiences regarding the criminal antics of the “Tailhook” admirals and generals.

You, Grant, Bitoff, and all the others are cut from the same sailcloth.

Quashing federal legislators’ Dicks’ and Gorton’s insistent demand for an independent review, and in the wake of Tailhook, your declaration to Boorda and Arthur became the Navy’s official and classified obstructing position.

It was as my confession that you represented the counterfeit writing to Chief of Naval Operations Mike Boorda and to Boorda’s Vice CNO Stan Arthur in your close-hold, secret internal memorandum dated 28 April 1994.

Undeterred, as we’d expect, Derek Vander Schaaf pressed Grant to unearth Zeller’s 1989 Thanksgiving Day communication. Zeller’s memo came to public view on 8 July 1994. Vander Schaaf, now bloodied and battered in Tailhook, instantly realized the forgery’s evidentiary significance as proof of criminal activity. DODIG recognized the part which Navy-Marine Corps TJAG Rick Grant played in the outlaw adventure and witnessed his attempted concealment.

Vander Schaaf turned Zeller’s memo over to Senator Murray who in turn sent it to me in July 1994.

In a separate move, Vander Schaaf named Grant as an interested party in a felonious enterprise and requested guidance on how to proceed against him as a criminal suspect by petitioning Assistant Navy Secretary for Manpower and Reserve Affairs Frederick Pang in a letter dated 8 July 1994.

So, as of mid-July 1994, Senator Slade Gorton, Rep. Norm Dicks and Defense Department Inspector General Derek Vander Schaaf had called out Rick Grant as a criminal actor based upon proofs and evidences available then. A press report and editorial sounded the alarm regarding the need for independent scrutiny and new court-martial.

Fred Pang, emboldened and buoyed by the successful bulwarks constructed defending against Tailhook villainy, ignored Vander Schaaf’s warning and took no action against Grant. Pang joined in your policy declaration to Boorda and Arthur.

Then Mike Boorda declared my case closed.

A month passed during which Bitoff sent Boorda a written statement regarding Bitoff’s handling of my court-martial. Bitoff’s statement to Boorda remains unreleased to the public, guarded and classified to this day.

Advancing your written policy position that the forgery, in the original, bore my authentic signature, among other skullduggery, Bitoff’s offering of the forged confession later profiled and endorsed by Rick Grant and you, Mike Boorda wrote to Norm Dicks on 8 August 1994 explaining that my case was closed and that I should apply for retirement at my earliest possible opportunity. Boorda admitted to personally reviewing my case “very carefully.”

But the case wasn’t really closed. It just lay dormant.

While you and the rest never looked back, I’ve never stopped looking.

All the while the forgery grows in magnitude.

Your direct criminal connection to the forgery grows ever more serious.

Folks holding down the fort began to leave the scene of action.

Mike Boorda shot himself on 16 May 1996. You retired on 7 November of that year.

Rick Grant retired in 1997.

All the time I continue to apply pressure from every angle of attack I’m able to advance.

Importunities to Defense Criminal Investigative Service federal agents working out of the mid-Atlantic field office in Crystal City, Virginia in March 1997 led to the involvement of senior NCIS agents stationed at the Washington Navy Yard.

As a direct result of your certification that the name applied to the questioned document was really my signature, and based upon your use of the criminal instrument as an authentic writing, the NCIS, now green-lighted, moved out aggressively to come after me.

I did not know at the time that I had Grant and you to thank for the confidence NCIS agents displayed as they forcefully asserted that I was the guy who authored and signed the letter of reprimand response.

I knew about Bitoff and his criminal allies. I did not know about you.

On 3 April 1997, with you, Grant, and Boorda gone, NCIS Deputy Director Gerry W. Nance initiated, finally, a serious investigation into the forgery, but it was I who was the main object of the law enforcement effort.

The NCIS investigated the Tailhook scandal and Fitzpatrick’s claim of forgery in his court-martial file in 1997, but promptly dropped the investigation once it became clear that a Marine Corps attorney, Kevin M. Anderson, had in fact created the forgery

Nance warned me that NCIS agents were confident I signed the document in question myself. They (he) “knew” I was just using the guise of forgery as a device to get them to look more closely and carefully into the 1989-1990 court-martial.

Nance promised me that should I continue to insist the response to the letter of reprimand was forged, NCIS agents were going to find it, prove the signature genuinely my own, then force my return to active duty to stand before a court-martial once more.

After that, no one could find the original of the court-martial record, never mind the forged confession.

April, May, June, July and then August. There’s a nationwide search under way looking for the record.

No joy.

On 5 September 1997 I went to the Pentagon JAG office to talk to Rick Grant’s replacement, John Hutson.

Captain Don Guter intervened, backed me into the passageway, and shooed me away.

Later that afternoon, as occurred on 27 April 1994, there was a panic; an alarm sounded and folks scurried to general quarters stations to prevent any possible disclosure of the forgery.

The notion that the document in question really was a forgery, contrary to your 1994 policy position declaration, was finally sinking in, and it made the Navy-Marine Corps look “really bad.”  5 SEPT 1997 NCIS memo

Which is to say it makes you look really bad.

NCIS Deputy Director Ernie Simon additionally wrote that a forgery worked to prove my earlier protestations regarding the scurrilous, criminal adventures of by this time so many flag officers and their subordinates.

Navy Captain and OJAG IG Rand Pixa eventually turned up the original court-martial record and forgery on 4 December 1997. How Pixa came into possession of these original documents “is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.”

Just days ago a Marine Corps officer intimately involved in the chain of custody maze came forward only to make the travel history of these original papers muddier and murkier.

However, they were found and exhumed. NCIS Special Agent Richard Allen instantly identified Marine Corps Captain Kevin Anderson as the culprit in the forgery of my name.

So as to prevent making the Navy, or the Marine Corps, or you or any other flag officer connected in crime “look really bad,” NCIS Director David L. Brant closed the forgery investigation on 3 February 1998.

A memo dated 27 January 1997 distributed internally among the senior-most NCIS directors ran cover for you and the rest by stating, “Our reasoning for not investigating [the forgery] and other allegations [was] that they were beyond the statute of limitations and therefore could not be prosecuted…[Brant needs] to be ‘refreshed’ on the timeframe again, but I’m fairly certain that this was our reasoning. By the way our charter specifically says that the NCIS can defer investigations ‘when in NCIS judgement, the inquiry would be fruitless and unproductive.’ I’d say this would qualify.”

That’s how you dodged a bullet in 1997, just the year after your retirement.

Six months later, in June 1998, Navy Secretary Dalton gave Bitoff’s former staff JAG, Tim Zeller, a clean bill of health, once more standing upon the foundation you’d built with Rick Grant.

Dalton wrote: “Allegations which brought into question LCDR Zeller’s suitability for promotion to Commander have been resolved. An investigation into this matter by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) and a complete review of the case by [Rear Admiral Rick Grant], the Navy Judge Advocate General, have both determined there was no misconduct by LCDR Zeller [regarding Zeller’s performance in the Fitzpatrick court-martial] and the alleged misconduct is determined to be unsubstantiated.”

To be sure, the reason the NCIS (or NIS) didn’t investigate the forgery or other criminal allegations beginning in 1990 was because of the intended impenetrable obstructions of men such as Bob Kihune, David Bennett, John Bitoff, Leon Schachte, Rick Grant, many admirals and generals, and you. That populates a very long list of admirals and generals.

Your April 1994 policy statement to Mike Boorda, holding up a known and reported forgery as an original writing, successfully accomplished much in the effort to run the clock.

Grant and you declared the questioned document to be a genuine article bearing my true signature. By so doing, he and you joined in the commission of a criminal act.

CNO Mike Boorda and VCNO Stan Arthur embraced and adopted the Zlatoper-Grant joint declaration and rendered it the official policy of the Navy-Marine Corps in all things related to my court-martial. By so doing, Boorda and Arthur joined in the commission of a criminal act.

The Boorda-Arthur-Zlatoper-Grant policy stands strong today, undisturbed, notwithstanding the fact that the fake confession is a forgery, a genuine, proven criminal instrument, the court-martial panel is a proven rig, and the Zeller-to-Bitoff memos have become the stuff of legend.

Years passed as proofs and evidences of Bitoff’s rigged court-martial continued to mount.

Still, arrogance and pride blinded senior military governors from doing the right thing, knowing they’d been caught rigging a court-martial, knowing that a growing number of admirals and generals who’d wrestled with this animal were known criminal actors.

On 4 October 1999, leaning back on your April 1994 memo to Boorda and Arthur, Navy Secretary Danzig wrote to Representative Dicks, “I’m very much influenced by Mike Boorda’s 1994 review [wherein Boorda, Arthur, Grant and you used a forged confession as a prop] and that of numerous other reviews [read Kihune, Bennett, Stewart and Gonzalez who knew first hand that Bitoff, Zeller and Anderson had rigged the court-martial panel, exchanged internal secret written communications with each other, and had in every way manipulated the disciplinary process].”

I met with Representative Dicks in his Washington, D.C. office on 14 March 2001, the day after testifying before the Cox Commission hearings at the George Washington University School of Law. I briefed Dicks on new developments and on my testimony from the day before.

After two weeks’ consideration, Dicks wrote to both Navy Secretary Pirie and to FBI Director Freeh, complaining once more about my rigged court-martial, focusing special attention on the crimes of perjury and forgery.

During a December 2006 interview, caught unexpectedly in that moment that a deer runs into the headlights unguarded, Zeller gave himself away when confronted with his clandestine memo stream exchange with Bitoff.

Until then, Zeller didn’t know his surreptitious missives had become public.

Excerpted from Zeller’s interview:

“Before you hang up on me,” I said, “I do need to tell you that I hold in my hand a number of memos that you wrote to an Admiral John Bitoff that are not part of the official record of the case.”

The line went silent. “What memos?”

“Well,” I went on, “there’s this one, a report that you sent to Admiral Bitoff, stating that Fitzpatrick was guilty before the Article 32 was even held. I also have one where you state that you don’t like to keep copies of memos in case your actions are questioned later…”

Zeller hung up on me after reading me the Riot Act, but as I went back to writing, the phone rang again.

“Yeah, this is Tim Zeller. What’s your radio show?”

“Did you talk to anybody at JAG?” Zeller demanded. I told him that I’ve talked to a lot of people, that this was the culmination of months of research. I explained that I wasn’t in the business of ruining people’s lives or careers, and that this information had dropped into my lap during an investigation into the misconduct behind the Pendleton 8, Haditha, and Airborne cases. I again offered him the chance to come on the show and talk about the accusations, but he refused.

“You even check your facts? You need to check your facts,” he kept saying.

“Why do you think I’m calling you?” I asked. “I’m giving you a chance to answer this, to come on the show or call in and tell your side. There’s evidence that this case was mishandled, and it’s part of a bigger picture of misconduct on the part of the JAG Corps.”

“I’ll tell you, if you think this case was mishandled, I could tell some stories…I’ve been a defense attorney, too.” He paused, then, letting the unspoken hang.

Zeller, just like your email to me on Sunday: “Check your facts!”

Release of many of Zeller’s illegal communications with Bitoff from 1989-1990 combined with your internal memo to Boorda and Arthur from April 1994 were blocked, remaining under seal until 28 July 2001.

More evidence is being withheld even now.

I’ve regularly reported Navy-Marine Corps Judge Advocate General Rick Grant as the flag officer who has done more to cover up Bitoff’s rigged court-martial than any other uniformed officer involved.

I name you as a flag officer holding the number two position.

Hear me. Hear me now. Hear me carefully. Hear me clearly! What you’ve done is very deeply personal!

My dad passed away when I was very young. I had to learn about him growing up reading history books. My father fought in World War II. He was assigned as a medical officer aboard USS COLE (DD – 155) as part of a suicide assault force invading Safi Harbor, Morocco from the sea to the south and east of Casablanca on 8 November 1942 during Operation Torch.

Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr., Medical Corps, U.S. Navy, was awarded the Bronze Star with “V” for valor, the highest award combination for valor available to doctors serving on the battlefield. For medical officers, the Bronze Star “V” represents the Medal of Honor.

LCDR Greg Palmer, my dad’s commanding officer in USS COLE, was awarded the Navy Cross.

I attended Annapolis because of my dad and am a distinguished military graduate from the Class of 1975, graduating third in the class for leadership.

I always sign my name formally as “Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III.”

Always.

In his attempted simulation of my name,, Captain of Marines Kevin Martis “Andy” Anderson betrayed his criminal act by failing to add the Roman numeral “III” generation suffix.

Anderson also misspelled my name.

Whatever anyone else might say, I assure you I know one reason why Mike Boorda took his own life.

Boorda died just a few feet away from where Anderson’s forgery of my father’s name and the forgery of my name was being secreted and hidden aboard the Washington Navy Yard.

Boorda took his last breath holding a gun in one hand and a cat of nine tails in the other.

Ol’ “Zap” Zlatoper had a part in it…holdin’ a whip in your hand, too.

I bear the scars and stripes to prove it!

I set out writing this open letter days ago thinking I’d cleverly bait you into a dialogue posing the questions why my character didn’t count before.

Why it didn’t ever count.

I caught myself in the folly.

This was never about my character. It’s always been about the lack of yours.

Which is to say that character content was never your concern.

More about character assassination.

You, Boorda, Bitoff, Arthur…you all knew what you did. You all knew what you were doing. None of you cared.

That arrogance and pride thing again.

Going back over dates and times, reorienting myself once again, I’ve come back to suffer a situational awareness I experienced so many years ago.

I see you for who you really are.

And the bad news for all concerned is that I’m just that guy still shouting “No! as loud as hell in the midst of a room full of people going in the other direction.”

Still persisting! Still persevering!

It’s time for you to come forward to publicly claim your crimes, condemn them, and atone for them.

I want my name back, sir!

Beware the Fury of the Patient Man,

Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, III
United States Navy Retired
Surface warfare – Qualified for command at sea – Naval parachutist
Distinguished Military Graduate
United States Naval Academy at Annapolis
Class of 1975

© 2013, The Post & Email. All rights reserved.


Article printed from The Post & Email: http://www.thepostemail.com

URL to article: http://www.thepostemail.com/2013/09/17/scars-and-stripes/


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AMAZING GRACE – TAPS

(click here)

Norman Rockwell – “Mending the Flag” 27 May 1922) (CLICK ON IMAGE)

MEMORIAL DAY 2012 (click here)

Sergeant of Marines Timothy Joseph Harrington spent nine-hours in constructing the post linked above. 

Image link above

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Click on underlined “hot-links”

Cemetery Watchmen

Ashes found in trash led to proper burial

LISTEN, REFLECT, and PRAY

MANSIONS OF THE LORD – United States Military Academy Mens Glee Club

THE NAVY HYMN – United States Naval Academy

Mens Glee Club

ECHO TAPS – United States Marine Corps Band

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Captain William Edward Nordeen, United States Navy (CLICK ABOVE)

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(Photo links to Brad’s biography)

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Men of the USS STARK (FFG – 31) – 17 May 1987 

SN Doran H. Bolduc, Lacey, WARMSA Dexter D. Grissett, Macon, GAFCCS Robert L. Shippee, Adams Center, NYBM1 Braddi O. Brown, Calera, ALFC3 William R. Hansen, Reading, MASMSA Jeffrey C. Sibley, Metairie, LAFC3 Jeffrey L. Calkins, Richfield Springs, NYGMG3 Daniel Homicki, Elizabeth, NJOS3 Lee Stephens, Pemberton, OHSN Mark R. Caouette, Fitchburg, MAOSSN Kenneth D. Janusik, Jr., Clearwater, FLBM2 James R. Stevens, Visalia, CASN John A. Ciletta, Jr.,  Brigantine, NJOS1 Steven E. Kendall, Honolulu, HIET3 Martin J. Supple, Jacksonville, FLSR Brian M. Clinefelter, San Bernardino, CAEMCS Stephen Kiser, Elkhart, INFC1 Gregory L. Tweady, Champaign, ILOS3 Antonio A. Daniels, Greeleyville, SCSM1 Ronnie G. Lockett, Bessemer, ALET3 Kelly R. Quick, Linden, MIET3 Christopher DeAngelis, Dumont, NJGMM1 Thomas J. MacMullen, Darby, PASN Vincent L. Ulmer, Bay Minette, ALIC3 James S. Dunlap, Osceola Mills, PAEW3 Charles T. Moller, Columbus, GAEW3 Joseph P. Watson, Ferndale, MISTGSN Steven T. Erwin,  Troy, MIDS1 Randy E. Pierce, Choctaw, OKET3 Wayne R. Weaver, II, New Bethlehem, PARM2 Jerry Boyd Farr, Charleston, SCSA Jeffrei L. Phelps, Locust Grove, VAOSSN Terrance Weldon, Coram, NYQMCS Vernon T. Foster, Jacksonville, FLGM3 James Plonsky, Van Nuys, CAIC2 Lloyd A. Wilson, Summerville, SC SMSN Earl P. Ryals,  Boca Raton, FL 

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Click on the patch (scroll down for the full report)

Casualties of the 30 July 1987 “Desert Duck” crash Lt. William E. Ramsburg, 31, of Scotland, S.D., the pilot; Lt. (j.g.) James F. Lazevnick, 25, of Waldorf, MD. the co-pilot, Radioman 2nd Class Albert B. Duparl of Saint Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Air Force Lt. Col. Horace S. Gentle, 44, of Mooresville, N.C., a staff officer with the U.S. Central Command.

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Petty Officer Shields Medal of Honor Citation (link)


USS MARVIN SHIELDS (FF – 1066) Association (link)

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LCU – 1500 – CLICK ON IMAGE

DEDICATED to the MEMORY of the
CREW of LCU-1500 KILLED IN ACTION in VIETNAM

* 28 February 1968 *

RMSN K. L. Cook

* 27 February 1969 *

BMC Donald J. Fisher, EN1 Bert E. Burton, EM1 Cecil F. Bush, CS2 Marvin D. Avery, RM2 David W. Hawryshko, QM3 Earnest J. Buckelew, GMG3 Ronald J. Gebbie, BM3 Donald M. Horton, BM3 Ronald P. Yuhas, FN Joseph F. Burinda, SN Bruno W. Demata, SN Craig E. Swagler, FN Charles A. Tavares

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Seaman James Burkhart, United States Navy – USS STERETT (CG – 31)

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Ed “Too Tall” Freeman, United States Army – Congressional Medal of Honor recipient (CLICK ABOVE)

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Captain Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr., Medical Corps, United States Navy – recipient Bronze Star wtih Combat “V” for Valor (OPERATION TORCH – 8 November 1942) (CLICK ABOVE)

CASABLANCA 1942

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GARDEN OF STONES

LISTEN, REFLECT, and PRAY

MANSIONS OF THE LORD (Ronan Tynan – click on gray dot with white right pointing arrow next to Ronan’s photo)

Minstrel Boy (John McDermott)

THE NAVY HYMN

ECHO TAPS

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IN MEMORY OF THE MEN OF USS INDIANAPOLIS (CA – 35) (CLICK ON IMAGE)

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Second Class Petty Officer  Michael Monsoor, United States Navy – recipient Congressional Medal of Honor (CLICK ON IMAGE)

Second Class Petty Officer Michael Monsoor – CLICK ON IMAGE

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Click on the illustration above for Lieutenant Murphy’s Medal of Honor Citation

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May the road rise up to meet you, may the wind ever be at your back,
May you find old friends waiting to greet you, there on the outside track.
We’re gathered together old times to remember, ’tis but for ourselves we would grieve,
So we’ll sing you a chorus and bid you farewell – fair winds and a following sea.

We’ll sing of ‘The Leaf’ and ‘The Parting Glass’, we’ll raise up our voices in song,
No sadness today for those who have passed, we celebrate with a voices glad and strong.
A catch in the throat, a tear in the eye, but no funeral dirge will this be,
We’ll roar ‘Auld Lang Syne’ as a victory song – fair winds and a following sea.

And those of us left here will miss a true friend, who shared with us good times and bad, Raising a glass to your memory we’ll say: “We’ve known you – why should we be sad?”
We honor a life that was lived to the full, we honor a spirit, now free.
You’ll long be remembered, whenever we say: “Fair winds and a following sea!”

JAG HUNTER here:

Only eighteen days following the start of OPERATION TORCH, whereupon my dad–Navy Doctor, Lieutenant Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr. and his shipmates in USS COLE (DD – 155) survived a suicide amphibious assault into the French Moroccan city of Safi, the movie CASABLANCA splashed on to the silver screen for the first time.

CASABLANCA, which was rushed out several months before its originally planned 1943 release, premiered in New York City on Thanksgiving Day, 1942. The Hollywood reporter raved: ‘Here is a drama that lifts you right out of your seat.’ The New York Times called it ‘highly entertaining and inspiring…a picture which makes the spine tingle and the heart leap.’

“As near and dear to the heart as CASABLANCA is today, audiences in ’42 had an especially unique perspective. The world was embroiled in desperate conflict as the Nazi regime spread its savage poison across Europe, and the events on the screen mirrored events on the global stage. As Variety noted: ‘By curious quirk of fortune, history-making caught up to this picture set against a background of French Morocco, and its timeliness assures big box-office reception. Only a few days ago, world interest rested in the town of Casablanca, with the landing of Allied forces there and bare mention of the name still excites the imagination.’ “

(Courtesy of MGM and Turner Entertainment)


26 November 1942 Thanksgiving Day Menu aboard

USS AUGUSTA (CA – 31)

(Assigned to OPERATION TORCH with USS COLE and USS BERNADOU)

MENU

Cream of Tomato Soup a la Casablanca
Fruit Cocktail         	 Saltines
Chicken and Turkey en Casserole a la Hewitt
Baked Spiced Spam a la Capitaine de Vaisseau
Giblet Gravy           Cherry Dressing
Buttered Asparagus Tips a la Fedala
Chantilly Potatoes a la Patton
Buttered June Peas de Safi       Scalloped Tomatoes
Cranberry Sauce
Hot Parker Rolls du Lyautey
Butter         Jam
Apple Pie a la Michelier        Strawberry Ice Cream
Mixed Nuts du Jean Bart
Sweet Pickles          Ripe Olives
Cigars        Cigarettes
Cafe Noir  


THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY
WASHINGTON

The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the PRESIDENTIAL UNIT CITATION to the

UNITED STATES SHIP COLE

for service as set forth in the following

CITATION:

“For outstanding performance as guide for the first wave of landing boats in the attack on Safi, French Morocco, November 8, 1942. Under crossfire from enemy coast defense batteries and machine gun emplacements, the COLE, proceeding through a narrow harbor entrance in total darkness, effectively countered hostile opposition, disembarked a company of U. S. Army assault troops, and supported their attack by accurate fire from her main battery. Her distinctive fulfillment of a difficult and hazardous mission contributed materially to the victorious achievement of the Southern Attack Group.”

For the President

/s/ Frank Knox
Secretary of the Navy

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One sailor in USS COLE was shot through the lungs during the assault. My dad stitched up and treated his wounded shipmate who survived to enjoy his 1942 Thanksgiving dinner. The man reported to full shipboard duty a month later.

Commander Greg Palmer, my dad’s skipper, was awarded the Navy Cross for his performance of duty during OPERATION TORCH.

My dad was awarded the Bronze Star with with a Combat “V” for valor; the highest combination for valor awarded to medical officers performing as doctors under fire while engaged with an enemy force.

Captain Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr, Medical Corps, United States Navy wearing the Bronze Star with “V” for performance of duty during OPERATION TORCH – the assault into CASABLANCA


FROM THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK

Monday, 9 November 1942

The biggest surprise came from Mr. Van Daan when at one o’clock, he announced that the British had landed in Tunis, Algiers, Casablanca, and Oran. “This is the beginning of the end,” everyone was saying, but Churchill the British Prime Minister, who had probably heard the same thing in England, said: “this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps the end of the beginning.”

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JAG HUNTER here remembering my Dad 70-years later: November 1942 World War II

Only eighteen days following the start of OPERATION TORCH, whereupon my dad–Navy Doctor, Lieutenant Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr. and his shipmates in USS COLE (DD – 155) survived a suicide amphibious assault into the French Moroccan city of Safi, the movie CASABLANCA splashed on to the silver screen for the first time.

CASABLANCA, which was rushed out several months before its originally planned 1943 release, premiered in New York City on Thanksgiving Day, 1942. The Hollywood reporter raved: ‘Here is a drama that lifts you right out of your seat.’ The New York Times called it ‘highly entertaining and inspiring…a picture which makes the spine tingle and the heart leap.’

“As near and dear to the heart as CASABLANCA is today, audiences in ’42 had an especially unique perspective. The world was embroiled in desperate conflict as the Nazi regime spread its savage poison across Europe, and the events on the screen mirrored events on the global stage. As Variety noted: ‘By curious quirk of fortune, history-making caught up to this picture set against a background of French Morocco, and its timeliness assures big box-office reception. Only a few days ago, world interest rested in the town of Casablanca, with the landing of Allied forces there and bare mention of the name still excites the imagination.’ “

(Courtesy of MGM and Turner Entertainment)


26 November 1942 Thanksgiving Day Menu aboard

USS AUGUSTA (CA – 31)

(Assigned to OPERATION TORCH with USS COLE and USS BERNADOU)

MENU

Cream of Tomato Soup a la Casablanca
Fruit Cocktail         	 Saltines
Chicken and Turkey en Casserole a la Hewitt
Baked Spiced Spam a la Capitaine de Vaisseau
Giblet Gravy           Cherry Dressing
Buttered Asparagus Tips a la Fedala
Chantilly Potatoes a la Patton
Buttered June Peas de Safi       Scalloped Tomatoes
Cranberry Sauce
Hot Parker Rolls du Lyautey
Butter         Jam
Apple Pie a la Michelier        Strawberry Ice Cream
Mixed Nuts du Jean Bart
Sweet Pickles          Ripe Olives
Cigars        Cigarettes
Cafe Noir  


THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY
WASHINGTON

The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the PRESIDENTIAL UNIT CITATION to the

UNITED STATES SHIP COLE

for service as set forth in the following

CITATION:

“For outstanding performance as guide for the first wave of landing boats in the attack on Safi, French Morocco, November 8, 1942. Under crossfire from enemy coast defense batteries and machine gun emplacements, the COLE, proceeding through a narrow harbor entrance in total darkness, effectively countered hostile opposition, disembarked a company of U. S. Army assault troops, and supported their attack by accurate fire from her main battery. Her distinctive fulfillment of a difficult and hazardous mission contributed materially to the victorious achievement of the Southern Attack Group.”

For the President

/s/ Frank Knox
Secretary of the Navy

~~~~~~~~~~

One sailor in USS COLE was shot through the lungs during the assault. My dad stitched up and treated his wounded shipmate who survived to enjoy his 1942 Thanksgiving dinner. The man reported to full shipboard duty a month later.

Commander Greg Palmer, my dad’s skipper, was awarded the Navy Cross for his performance of duty during OPERATION TORCH.

Captain Palmer’s citation reads: 

“The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to Lieutenant Commander George Goldston Palmer (NSN: 0-63369), United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism and distinguished service in the line of his profession as Commanding Officer of the Destroyer U.S.S. COLE (DD-155), during the occupation of the harbor Safi, French Morocco, 8 November 1942. Before daylight on 8 November 1942, Lieutenant Commander Palmer in the COLE led the first wave of assault boats to the assigned over beaches off Safi and then entered the harbor in support of the U.S.S. BERNADOU. With gallantry and intrepidity at grave risk to his own life, the lives of his crew and the embarked assault troops, he navigated his ship successfully through the unknown waters and the narrow entrance in the face of heavy gunfire from three shore batteries and several machine gun emplacements. While thus engaged he laid his ship alongside a dock and landed the assault troops. Lieutenant Commander Palmer thereafter greatly assisted the successful action of the assault troops by the accurate support fire of the COLE’s main battery. The fact that this exceptional feat was accomplished in almost total darkness without loss of life and disabling damage to the COLE are testimonials to the valor, intelligence and seamanship of this gallant officer, and reflect great credit upon the United States Naval Service.”

My dad was awarded the Bronze Star with with a Combat “V” for valor. This is the highest combination for valor awarded to medical officers performing as doctors under fire while engaged with an enemy force.

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MEN OF U.S. DESTROYER COLE (DD – 155

NORTH ATLANTIC PATROL CONVOY DUTY

1941 – 1942

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AFRICA, WE TOOK IT

AND WE LIKED IT

By ROBERT WALLACE, ENSIGN, U.S.N.R.

In Collaboration With PARKER MORELL

(Reprinted from THE SATURDAY EVENING POST January 23, 1943, pgs. 16, 17, 76 & 78
Editors note—This is the second of two articles by Ensign Wallace and Mr. Morrell)

One of our African Invasion force describes the perfection of American planning—tells how out boys learned to outbargain the natives, frustrate cheerful Arabs bent on larceny.

Even after we had landed a good many thousand American troops on the beaches at Safi, French Morocco, the city was not yet ours. That landing, successful as it was, still had to be converted into a full-scale invasion. The surrounding countryside had to be brought under our control, protecting airfields had to be captured and large-scale reinforcements kept from joining the defenders. It was a job calling for tremendous skill and organization, and it was here that all the long months of scheming and planning for this attack began to bear fruit.

Photo credit: Volume II of Samuel Eliot Morison’s History of United States Naval Operations in World War II : OPERATIONS IN NORTH AFRICAN WATERS October 1942 – June 1943

The big guns from the battleships offshore had silenced the coast defenses; our infantry, with hand grenades, rifles and mortar fire, had knocked out the machine-gun nests around the harbor, but Safi’s narrow, winding streets were still bitterly dominated by a garrison of French Foreign Legion troops. Confronted by superior numbers and fire power, they retreated slowly, fighting doggedly for every inch of ground.

Our troops had spent months training for just this kind of fighting, and they loved it. That was another thing about the invasion which gave us so much confidence—almost everything that happened seemed to have been anticipated by the high command and preparations made to take care of it.

For instance, just before we first went over the side of the transport, they told us that we were already thoroughly familiar with this landing. The commanding officer mentioned a certain maneuver we’d practiced a lot at our training school back in America. Then we remembered. At the time, we’d thought of it as just a peculiar type of night landing problem. Now that we recognized it for exactly the job we were to do in Africa, it didn’t seem nearly so difficult.

The infantry reacted the same way. Our troops, having been thoroughly trained in the art of street fighting, went about the job with coolness and precision. By noon, they had the Foreign Legionnaires holed up in a stone barracks in the middle of the city. From then on, it was just a question of wearing them down and smashing them up. When enough heavy tanks had been landed from the tank carriers we’d brought with us, the job was quickly finished. Shells from the tanks’ big guns smashed those stone walls as if they’d been paper. Naturally, the Legionnaires surrendered.

But even after this, there were still a lot of Legionnaires and native troops who hadn’t taken refuge in that barracks building and who, consequently hadn’t surrendered. They hid out in houses and buildings all over town and, by continual sniping made things very uncomfortable, particularly on the beaches.

This action of the snipers was not so foolhardy as it seems. At Marrakeech, a city about 100 miles inland, there was another large garrison of Legionnaires. These, it was believed, were still loyal to Vichy and would arrive in time to be able to keep the Americans from entering permanently. Until those forces arrived, the snipers were resolved to do everything possible to keep us from settling down.

I suppose that inland branch of the Foreign Legion was loyal, but it never had much chance to prove it. A strong force left Marrakech the day after we landed at Safi [November 9th, 1942], but didn’t get very far. Dive bombers from our carriers met and strafed them heavily. Then our light tanks and antitank units caught up with them and finished the job.

Perhaps the story might have been a little different if they’d had air support. But here again, the adage of a house divided proved itself. The commandant of the airfield at Marrakech, when told the Americans were in Safi, had looked up into a cloudless sky and announced it unthinkable for his planes to take off in such a blinding storm. For three days he continued to find excuses until, finally, one bomber—either with or without his permission—came over and dripped a few incendiaries.

We got the plane, of course. I sat the action out on the water. A thousand machine guns seemed to be firing at it. Line of tracer bullets converged into its fuselage from every angle. It bounced around on top of them for a moment like a ball bouncing on top of a fountain of water. Then it burst into flames and fell into the sea.

There was little trouble from the natives themselves. The loyal French greeted us with open arms, the Jews were cautious but hopeful, and the Arabs, who made up by far the largest part of the city’s population, accepted everything quite impassively.

There may have been a good reason for this Arab attitude. We landed on November eighth, and two days later a new Moslem month began during which it was illegal for true believers to start a war or to engage in fighting. On the other hand, they had only recently finished observing a month during which it was forbidden to eat food throughout the daylight hours. Consequently, when we arrived they were still in a rather weakened condition and, [pg. 17] even if inclined to fight, couldn’t have offered much resistance.

Ashore, we told everyone that we had no interest in internal politics. We intended to leave the native government strictly alone. Our only purpose, President Roosevelt had made clear in his broadcast, was to get at the Germans. When we had finished this job, we were going to get out. The Arabs mulled this over for a while. Coming in from the transports, we could see hundreds of them sitting motionless on the cliffs, presumably making up their minds. At first, they looked like a row of tree stumps.

There was something awfully grim and ominous about that scene. While those Arabs sat debating on the cliffs, buzzards soared and wheeled overhead. Now and then, one would suddenly swoop down, and you knew it had spotted another nest of knocked-out French machine gunners. It wasn’t pleasant to imagine what happened after that.  Finally, the Arabs decided we didn’t plan to conquer them; that we meant what we said about wanting only to drive the Germans and Vichy French out of Africa. From then on, hostilities were over, so far as they were concerned.

One by one they, they started coming down to the beaches and, before long, most of them were helping load our boats.

This brought up another delicate point. The Army was anxious to avoid offending the natives. Every soldier carried a booklet of African do’s and don’ts.

On shipboard, an Army intelligence man who had traveled extensively in North Africa had spent hours lecturing the troops.

“Never speak to or look at a native woman on the streets,” he told them. “If you don’t do anything else, for God’s sake, observe this rule. Your life and the life of every American in Morocco depends upon it.”

Other vital, though amusing, advice was:

“Never approach an Arab mosque. Respect the other fellow’s religion and he’ll respect yours.

“If Arabs offer you coffee, drink it. If an Arab engages you in conversation for any length of time and offers you three glasses of coffee, get out! That third glass is his polite way of telling you the interview is ended.

“Ninety-five per cent of the natives are Moslems. Bread is holy to Moslems. Never cut it with a knife. Always eat it with your right hand. Never drop it on the ground.”

But the pay-off was this little gem:

“If invited out to dinner with a native family, always leave something on your plate. This goes to the women and children who eat after you are finished.”

Nothing had been said, however, about what to do when the Arabs started to steal our supplies and equipment. And that was what they were doing. Apparently, when they decided to accept us, they also decided to accept all our belongings they could lay their hands on.

I saw one Arab eating powdered coffee from an Army breakfast ration that he’d broken into. He seemed to like it.

The children were worse than the grownups. Of course, since they all looked alike, it was futile to try to pursue them. [page 76]

All our landing-boat men were equipped with foul-weather gear—yellow oilskin coats and pants large enough to be worn over a regular uniform.

These were lying in the bottom of our boats during the day, and the Arabs started to steal them. One Arab from whom a full set was taken by soldiers wailed loudly. He thought those oilskins were American pajamas and he was planning to cut a fine figure before his wives that evening.

The unloading of food and equipment continued throughout most of the first week. Because only a few big boats could be docked in Safi harbor at one time, the rest had to be emptied by landing boats and whatever craft we could commandeer.

Photo credit: Volume II of Samuel Eliot Morison’s History of United States Naval Operations in World War II : OPERATIONS IN NORTH AFRICAN WATERS October 1942 – June 1943

The Navy had brought along a lot of highly trained machinist’s mates for this purpose. As soon as Safi surrendered, these fellows were put aboard the various boats in the harbor, with orders to get them started. The job sounds easier than it was. Some of those old tubs must have been launched shortly after the Ark. None was in good condition. Yet, somehow, those machinist’s mates got the engines going. Being French-made, all nuts and bolts were cut to the metric scale and none of our equipment would fit them. Where the men got tools to do the job, I don’t know. But within a day they had nearly everything working and, though breakdowns were frequent, they always manage to patch things up.

For five days and nights we hardly got out of our boats. The endurance of the enlisted men was amazing. At night, when too tired to go any longer, we’d tie up alongside a transport and lie down in the bottom of the cockpit for forty winks. We never tried to sleep in our landing boats on the beach. There was always danger of an air raid.  Out on the water, if one came, we had a chance to disperse. Lined up on the beach—particularly if the tide was out and we were some distance up on the sand—we’d have been setups for a strafing party.

When we arrived, everyone saw the end of rationing in sight. The Americans were bringing their own food; officers had announced that we had no intention of living off the country, and our conquest of Africa automatically precluded further export of agricultural products to France and Germany. One week after we took over North Africa—although most natives didn’t know it at the time—American Lend-Lease had purchased more than $5,000,000 [five million] worth of supplies and equipment for these French colonies.

Vichy had bled the country dry. For more than two years the Fascists had commandeered everything in sight. Morocco, normally a fertile agricultural country, was like a land upon which a blight had fallen. The Germans had been taking 80 per cent of all the vegetables, meat, wine, ore, leather, fruit, and eggs.  Gasoline was an almost forgotten commodity and the few trucks we did see ran on charcoal gas. There hadn’t been any cloth shipped into Morocco in more than two years. Nearly everyone was ragged and dirty. Even the so-called white-collar class wore shirts which were considerably darker than tattletale gray. That the people were hungry goes without saying, for the only staple they’d had to exist on since the fall of France was fish, which the natives caught in the ocean and bootlegged.

The tobacco situation was even worse. Cigarettes were rationed at thirty packages a year, and it is doubtful how much real tobacco even these contained. The Arabs, of course, are inveterate smokers, and nearly went crazy with joy when they found that America had not got around to rationing cigarettes. They’d work all day for a package of our smokes, and the only English phrase they picked up was “Packie schmook?”

To offer them a cigarette from a package was fatal. Instead of taking one, they’d snatch the lot and run off without tossing so much as a hurried thank you over their shoulder. Even children from five on up were old habitués and I was amused to see husky Americans, who had killed Morroccans in the morning without turning a hair, register shock and amazement when they saw the soldiers’ orphans happily smoking in the afternoon.

One touching example of native faith in America was displayed by a Safi innkeeper. The only liquor in the city was a weak domestic red wine that had been strictly rationed. Only the biggest café in Safe sold it. In two days this place completely exhausted its month’s supply.  Then the proprietor began to work on the next month’s stock, saying that if he couldn’t sell it, at least there was nothing in the regulations to prevent his giving it away. He actually did give it away—to the officers, at least. But, we discovered, he’d made so much profit on what he’d already sold us that he was far ahead of the game anyhow.

The sniping continued for three days. During this time a number of our men were wounded or killed. Those snipers were good, make no mistake about that.  We all went pretty carefully when they were about, and our troops had their hands full trying to eliminate them.

Casualties would have been a lot heavier without sulpha drugs which all our men carry. Of course, the complete story of the wonders of sulphanilamide can’t be told until the war is over. But the things we all saw there in Safi convinced us that in this war a lot fewer wounded men will die than in any other war.

Every American soldier carries a package of sulphanilamide powder to pour into his would when he is hit. If he can’t do it, a buddy will take care of the matter for him. Besides this, certain picked men in each platoon are also given little tubes of morphine which they can inject into the most seriously wounded.

I saw one man hit by a sniper’s bullet. It struck his cartridge belt, which exploded, tearing a tremendous hole in his stomach. No sooner had the man gone down than two other soldiers were at his side, with their own packages of sulpha powder torn open and ready to be poured into him. After doing this, they rushed him down to the beach, where there were special first-aid stations. Here [Doctor and Navy Lieutenant Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr., Medical Corps, ship’s medical officer assigned to USS COLE (DD – 155)] took two handfuls of sulpha powder and threw it into the wound, made some hasty emergency repairs and rushed the wounded man into a landing boat out to our transport, where here was an operating room.

Dr. Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr., Medical Corps, USN wearing the Bronze Star with “V” for valor for his performance of duty during OPERATION TORCH, 8 November 1942

Coming back to America a few days later, not even the doctors who had operated gave that man much of a chance to live. In fact, they even ordered the ship’s carpenter to make a coffin for him. But the soldier and the sulpha drugs fooled everyone. By the time we had sighted land, he was well enough to be demanding his coffin to keep for a souvenir.

During all the days of sniping, the Arabs would disappear like a flash just before each new wave broke out. When it died down again, they’d come straggling back. They always knew when some action was going to take place. When there were few Arabs around, or when those present looked worried, you knew a sniper was setting his sights somewhere. In the end, we figured out their system. They had wives and children strung out all around the beach to act as sniper spotters. Thereafter, when the Arabs started to fade away, so did we.

This Fascist resistance inconvenienced the loyal French as well as ourselves. One day, on the beach, I noticed a man who seemed to be tearing his hair out by the handful. He was a Frenchman who owned a big white house up on a cliff. It had been taken over by snipers. A destroyer in the harbor [USS COLE (DD – 155)] was trying to drive them out. It hit a corner of the house with a 3-inch (page 78) shell and the little Frenchman jumped up and down, howling with rage. The snipers refused to surrender, so the [USS COLE] let fly with another shell, which tool off the roof. At this, the Frenchman moaned and started to tear his hat to pieces. When the snipers still refused to give up, a light tank rolled over to finish off the house at close range. I left before Frenchman died of apoplexy.

Another time, about fourteen snipers were rounded up in a building and just as our infantry was about to blow them up with mortar shells, they waved a white flag. When they were brought down to the detention pen, it was discovered that two of the snipers were Vichy-French civilians. Instead of shooting them, the Army commander pardoned them and gave them the status of prisoners of war. This made our men very mad, but when the word of the action got to the right quarters, the sniping decreased noticeably.

As a matter of fact, we were pretty surprised to find even two Vichy-Frenchmen among the snipers. The death rate for Fascists was running high those days. People who, prior to our arrival, had been known Axis sympathizers, or who had swanked around as Vichy officials, seem to have been taken care of pretty quickly by the loyal French. I don’t know how true it is, but I heard later that during our landing operations—as soon as it could be seen that the Americans were entering the harbor in force enough to decide the issue—the French themselves beat or killed all the Fascists they could find.  None of the prisoners showed any hatred for us. All said they had fought because they were loyal to their officers, and the officers had told them to fight. No one regarded the affair as an international incident at all. It did seem to me—and a lot of other fellows as well—that during the height of the fighting many machine guns and coast-defense cannon could have been aimed to do much more damage than they did.

One prisoner—a communications man who had been in charge of a field telephone and at a coast-defense battery—said his instrument never seemed to work. Of course, he smiled, the fact that he didn’t bother to plug it in most of the time may have had something to do with this.

Debunking Hollywood

Our Foreign Legion captives didn’t look anything like the Hollywood version. There were no comedy characters, no handsome officers, and definitely no dancing girls. They were Belgians, Frenchmen, Spaniards and Italians. There had been a lot of German noncoms too. But when they discovered the Americans had landed, the stole an auto truck and fled inland. I asked one prisoner about those Germans’ deserting, and he shrugged his shoulders expressively. “Monsieur,” he answered, “what would you?” It was no more than we expected. They were pigs anyway!” He spat as he ground out the word cochons.

The Legionnaires’ uniforms were patched and ragged. The Germans hadn’t allowed Vichy to send them any decent military equipment since the fall of France. It was pretty obvious the Germans were planning to go into Africa themselves before long, and didn’t want much opposition. A great many of these men, particularly the natives, had no shoes. Those who did have shoes had worn and patched ones. A Legionnaire told me that the soles of his boots were so thin he could step on a piece of chewing gum and tell its flavor. The native troops were puttees and walked in bare feet so dirty that, at first glance, it looked as if they were wearing shoes.

A lot of our men were quite impressed, at first, by having fought and beaten the Legion. They’d seen so many movies they thought it was invincible, I guess. In the flesh, though, these soldiers weren’t so formidable. They were much smaller than I thought they were going to be. I guess you’d call them short and wiry. They were very tanned; their skin was like leather.  Mostly, they were quite young—from twenty-three to thirty, I’d say. Some of the noncoms were veterans of about forty-five. But not many.

They wore khaki uniforms, but it was a much different color khaki from ours. There seemed to be more green and brown in it. I saw only two with kepis—those flat-topped hats with a towel down the back of the neck. The others had steel helmet with a ridge down the middle. These had a shield with the initials RF—République Français—on it. If they’d been new issue, those shields would have read EF—for Vichy’s Êtat Français.

The men carried long thin bayonets on World-War-I-vintage rifles. The noncoms had their ratings indicated by slanting stripes, like our Navy hash marks. The officers’ ranks were indicated by horizontal stripes and elaborate gold-braided hats.

The Legionnaires’ teeth were brown and discolored. Toothbrushes seem to be nonexistent all over Africa. Even if there were any, there still wouldn’t be any tooth powder or paste. In fact, the only cleansing agent we ever saw was a dirty, black greaseless soap that left its user dirtier than ever. Our soldiers soon found that the way to a Frenchman’s heart was to give him a bar of soap for his wife. Even strong laundry soap was gratefully accepted.

The prisoners’ big stock in trade was their uniform buttons. Every American tried to get some for his girl back home. The words stamped on them—Légion Êtrangère—were irresistible. When I left Africa, the current rate of exchange was two packages of American cigarettes for one Legion button.

Because I could speak French, I was made an interpreter for the prisoners working on the docks during the last day or two. I talked to a goon many of these men, trying to discover why, if they hated the Germans so much as they said they did, they had not tried to join General De Gaulle and the Fighting French. They told me that some of their comrades had deserted to the De Gaullists in Libya, but that most of them preferred to remain in Morocco, where up to the time we came, it had been safe. I saw only one captured officer, a captain. All he said was that his glad it was over and was sorry there had ever been any fighting.

I talked to a civilian who had been a lieutenant in General Corap’s army at Sedan, in 1940. He was a French Jew who had managed to escape to North Africa during the armistice negotiations. He was wildly excited about the coming of the Americans and was all steamed up about the prospect of being able to fight the Germans again. He was leaving to join General Giraud’s new African army that same afternoon.

This seemed to be the general attitude of all the Jews in Morocco. A number of them had settled here after the fall of France, and life under Vichy domination had not been too easy for them. When we first arrived, they were worried that we’d treat them the same way the Fascists had. Everywhere we went we were asked, “What are you going to do about the Jews?” Finally, one American private with a long hooked nose was asked this question once too often.

“I’ll tell yuh, bid,” he said. “It ain’t the Jews we hate, it’s everybody with green hair. Whenever we find a guy with green hair, we got orders to shoot him immediately.”

When the shooting was over and the troops started to roam around the city, there were constant squabbles between the Arabs and Americans over money changing. In less than a week, the franc rose from eighty-five to the dollar to less than thirty. When an American officer was called to settle a financial argument, he always gave the Arab the best of the deal. Once our men caught on to this fact, they stopped calling on their officers for assistance.

The Arabs were great bargainers whenever they ran into an old horse trader from the Midwest, they took to him like a long-lost brother.  The Arabs wanted cloth, chocolate and cigarettes. The Americans wanted gold-embroidered slippers and belts for their girls, pottery for their folks, and silver rings and cigarette boxes for themselves.  Everywhere you went in the bazaars, you’d see Arabs and Americans sitting on the ground and haggling by the hour. They used sign language and high-school French, and seemed to do all right.

The French, including those who were political and racial refugees from Vichy, having been saved from a fate worse than death, still were not averse to making dishonest dollar or two. In their ships, price tickets were pasted on all articles for sale. After the first day of landing operations, prices jumped about 500 per cent.  We quickly learned to pull off half a dozen or price tags and pay only the amount called for on the bottom one. The French expected to dicker with us even on this, but there were so many souvenir-hunting doughboys that there wasn’t enough stock in any of the stores to go around. Some of the more progressive merchants, having disposed of everything on their shelves, presently took to selling old French newspapers brought up from their cellars.

One Frenchman was even smarter, and skinned the pants off almost the entire expeditionary force. The only bank in town was closed until the occupation had been completed. We didn’t know this, however, so it gave the Frenchman his chance. He set up a kitchen table and chair in the doorway of the bank and proceeded to change American greenbacks into francs from dawn until dusk. His rate of exchange seemed to be any old figure that came into his head.  Greenbacks were falling out of his pockets; I actually saw some stuffed into his shoes. For a couple of days even the officers were taken in by this fellow. Then somebody caught on to what was happening and that Frenchman went out of business very suddenly. It was the one phase of the expedition where Army Intelligence seemed to have slipped up.

The Test of War

The Arabs, in their own way, had a similar racket. They changed money by weight. It took us quite a while to realize that two handfuls of heavy copper coins still didn’t equal one American dime.

But in spite of all our difficulties with the money-changers, we didn’t make out too badly. We landing-boat men were the only Navy representatives who could go ashore. On the ships, there were still hundreds of officers and sailors anxious for souvenirs from Safi. Coming back from a bout in the bazaars, we’d figure out how badly the French and Arabs has gypped us, and then we’d pass on our losses—with a slight added profit—to the men on the boat. They, in their turn, probably gypped someone else. In the Navy, everything seems to even up sooner or later.

Since I’ve been back in America, the one question people have asked more than any other concerns the quality and quantity of the troops’ equipment. It’s a pleasure to answer that, and I’d like to repeat here what I’ve told them.

Everyone—our own men as well as the Europeans—was amazed at the way our supplies and equipment stood up. I’ve heard a lot of stories about the poor materials American soldiers have had to use in other wars, but this time, I can assure you, it’s different.

Our motors ran at top speed for days on end with never a breakdown. We dropped tons of material into the water and sand at one time or another, and when they were recovered and put to use, everything from ammunitions to packaged field rations was still in prime condition.  I heard many soldiers comment amazedly on the fact that the bullets in their machine-gun belts had been so carefully inspected and sorted that they never had to stop to clear a bad cartridge out of the gun. We lived and thrived for days on field rations and, though it is true that they weren’t always as desirable as hot food, no one ever complained about either the taste or their ability to satisfy our hunger.

Having superior equipment to us in action gives a fellow an awfully grateful feeling toward the folks back home. Soldiers like grousing better than anything else except eating, and when you hear not one but hundreds of men praise the quality of their weapons and their grub, the winning of this war doesn’t seem uncertain at all.

-

PRESIDENTIAL UNIT CITATION (click here)

“U.S.S. COLE (155)

“SPECIAL ARTICLE FROM AFRICAN FRONT DESCRIBING AMERICAN ASSAULT LAST SUNDAY. EDITORS NOTE: WRITTEN BY WALTER LOGAN WITH U.S. TASK FORCES IN SAFI, FRENCH MOROCCO. NOVEMBER 9TH (DELAYED).

“A squadron of destroyers on a suicide mission paved the way for capture of this strategic port 140 miles down the coast from the French port of Casablanca. They raced into the harbor in the predawn yesterday [Sunday, 8 November 1942] and took over the docks before the French knew what hit them. Then they held off counterattacks until wave of our assault troops established beachheads; “I watched action from the signal bridge of a transport anchored a few miles offshore with my heavily armed bodyguard Lieut John H Wheldon of the army public relations. Our men crowded the starboard rail waiting for gunfire or the vertical searchlight signals indicating the docks were captured. The suicide ships [USS BERNADOU (DD - 153) and USS COLE (DD - 155)] began moving at four am and through the dark and calm sea. The first destroyer [ USS BERNADOU] began moving at fullspeed and went through Minefields without detection. It rounded the Safi breakwater before the shore batteries detected it.

“Searchlights flashed and tracer bullets began arching toward the destroyers. They fired back with all guns blazing as it headed directly for the beach. Huddled below decks were 150 assault troops. The Captain maneuvered the first destroyer [USS BERNADOU] full astern as they closed to shore where it struck some rocks. Assault troops began climbing down the nets. Other destroyers followed close behind the lead ship. French fire was heavy but American troops drove forward silencing nearby batteries on the cliffs overlooking the tiny harbor. I could see flashes lighting up the sky and red tracer floating toward us. Another destroyer meanwhile [USS COLE] wheeled into the docks and the men climbed ashore and began pushing inland.”

Chart credit: Volume II of Samuel Eliot Morison’s History of United States Naval Operations in World War II : OPERATIONS IN NORTH AFRICAN WATERS October 1942 – June 1943

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USS COLE (DD -155) was named for Edward Ball Cole was born 23 September 1879 in Boston, Mass. One of the country’s leading experts on machineguns, he received a direct commission in the Marine Corps in World War I.

Major Cole received the Navy Cross and Army Distinguished Service Cross for heroism during the Battle of Belleau Wood (10 June 1918) in which he was mortally wounded. He died 18 June 1918 and is buried at Mouroux Cemetery, France. His decorations included the Navy Cross, the Distinguished Service Cross; as well as the French Légion d’Honneur and the Croix de Guerre. Cole’s Navy Cross citation reads: “In the Bois de Belleau, France, in June 10, 1918, his unusual heroism in leading his company under heavy fire enabled it to fight with exceptional effectiveness. He personally worked fearlessly until he was mortally wounded”. His Distinguished Service Cross citation reads: “In the Bois de Belleau, on June 10th 1918, displayed extraordinary heroism in organizing positions, rallying his men and disposing of his guns, continuing to expose himself fearlessly until he fell. He suffered the loss of his right hand and received wounds in upper arm and both thighs.”

AMAZING GRACE – TAPS

(click here)

Norman Rockwell – “Mending the Flag” 27 May 1922) (CLICK ON IMAGE)

MEMORIAL DAY 2012 (click here)

Sergeant of Marines Timothy Joseph Harrington spent nine-hours in constructing the post linked above. 

Image link above

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Click on underlined “hot-links”

Cemetery Watchmen

Ashes found in trash led to proper burial

LISTEN, REFLECT, and PRAY

MANSIONS OF THE LORD – United States Military Academy Mens Glee Club

THE NAVY HYMN – United States Naval Academy

Mens Glee Club

ECHO TAPS – United States Marine Corps Band

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Captain William Edward Nordeen, United States Navy (CLICK ABOVE)

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(Photo links to Brad’s biography)

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Men of the USS STARK (FFG – 31) – 17 May 1987 

SN Doran H. Bolduc, Lacey, WARMSA Dexter D. Grissett, Macon, GAFCCS Robert L. Shippee, Adams Center, NYBM1 Braddi O. Brown, Calera, ALFC3 William R. Hansen, Reading, MASMSA Jeffrey C. Sibley, Metairie, LAFC3 Jeffrey L. Calkins, Richfield Springs, NYGMG3 Daniel Homicki, Elizabeth, NJOS3 Lee Stephens, Pemberton, OHSN Mark R. Caouette, Fitchburg, MAOSSN Kenneth D. Janusik, Jr., Clearwater, FLBM2 James R. Stevens, Visalia, CASN John A. Ciletta, Jr.,  Brigantine, NJOS1 Steven E. Kendall, Honolulu, HIET3 Martin J. Supple, Jacksonville, FLSR Brian M. Clinefelter, San Bernardino, CAEMCS Stephen Kiser, Elkhart, INFC1 Gregory L. Tweady, Champaign, ILOS3 Antonio A. Daniels, Greeleyville, SCSM1 Ronnie G. Lockett, Bessemer, ALET3 Kelly R. Quick, Linden, MIET3 Christopher DeAngelis, Dumont, NJGMM1 Thomas J. MacMullen, Darby, PASN Vincent L. Ulmer, Bay Minette, ALIC3 James S. Dunlap, Osceola Mills, PAEW3 Charles T. Moller, Columbus, GAEW3 Joseph P. Watson, Ferndale, MISTGSN Steven T. Erwin,  Troy, MIDS1 Randy E. Pierce, Choctaw, OKET3 Wayne R. Weaver, II, New Bethlehem, PARM2 Jerry Boyd Farr, Charleston, SCSA Jeffrei L. Phelps, Locust Grove, VAOSSN Terrance Weldon, Coram, NYQMCS Vernon T. Foster, Jacksonville, FLGM3 James Plonsky, Van Nuys, CAIC2 Lloyd A. Wilson, Summerville, SC SMSN Earl P. Ryals,  Boca Raton, FL 

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Click on the patch (scroll down for the full report)

Casualties of the 30 July 1987 “Desert Duck” crash Lt. William E. Ramsburg, 31, of Scotland, S.D., the pilot; Lt. (j.g.) James F. Lazevnick, 25, of Waldorf, MD. the co-pilot, Radioman 2nd Class Albert B. Duparl of Saint Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Air Force Lt. Col. Horace S. Gentle, 44, of Mooresville, N.C., a staff officer with the U.S. Central Command.

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Petty Officer Shields Medal of Honor Citation (link)


USS MARVIN SHIELDS (FF – 1066) Association (link)

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LCU – 1500 – CLICK ON IMAGE

DEDICATED to the MEMORY of the
CREW of LCU-1500 KILLED IN ACTION in VIETNAM

* 28 February 1968 *

RMSN K. L. Cook

* 27 February 1969 *

BMC Donald J. Fisher, EN1 Bert E. Burton, EM1 Cecil F. Bush, CS2 Marvin D. Avery, RM2 David W. Hawryshko, QM3 Earnest J. Buckelew, GMG3 Ronald J. Gebbie, BM3 Donald M. Horton, BM3 Ronald P. Yuhas, FN Joseph F. Burinda, SN Bruno W. Demata, SN Craig E. Swagler, FN Charles A. Tavares

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Seaman James Burkhart, United States Navy – USS STERETT (CG – 31)

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Ed “Too Tall” Freeman, United States Army – Congressional Medal of Honor recipient (CLICK ABOVE)

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Captain Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr., Medical Corps, United States Navy – recipient Bronze Star wtih Combat “V” for Valor (OPERATION TORCH – 8 November 1942) (CLICK ABOVE)

CASABLANCA 1942

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GARDEN OF STONES

LISTEN, REFLECT, and PRAY

MANSIONS OF THE LORD (Ronan Tynan – click on gray dot with white right pointing arrow next to Ronan’s photo)

Minstrel Boy (John McDermott)

THE NAVY HYMN

ECHO TAPS

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IN MEMORY OF THE MEN OF USS INDIANAPOLIS (CA – 35) (CLICK ON IMAGE)

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Second Class Petty Officer  Michael Monsoor, United States Navy – recipient Congressional Medal of Honor (CLICK ON IMAGE)

Second Class Petty Officer Michael Monsoor – CLICK ON IMAGE

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Click on the illustration above for Lieutenant Murphy’s Medal of Honor Citation

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May the road rise up to meet you, may the wind ever be at your back,
May you find old friends waiting to greet you, there on the outside track.
We’re gathered together old times to remember, ’tis but for ourselves we would grieve,
So we’ll sing you a chorus and bid you farewell – fair winds and a following sea.

We’ll sing of ‘The Leaf’ and ‘The Parting Glass’, we’ll raise up our voices in song,
No sadness today for those who have passed, we celebrate with a voices glad and strong.
A catch in the throat, a tear in the eye, but no funeral dirge will this be,
We’ll roar ‘Auld Lang Syne’ as a victory song – fair winds and a following sea.

And those of us left here will miss a true friend, who shared with us good times and bad, Raising a glass to your memory we’ll say: “We’ve known you – why should we be sad?”
We honor a life that was lived to the full, we honor a spirit, now free.
You’ll long be remembered, whenever we say: “Fair winds and a following sea!”

MEMORIAL DAY 2011

Sunday, 29 May 2011

AMAZING GRACE – TAPS

(click here)

Norman Rockwell – “Mending the Flag” 27 May 1922) (CLICK ON IMAGE)

MEMORIAL DAY 2011 (click here)

Sergeant of Marines Timothy Joseph Harrington spent nine-hours in constructing the post linked above. 

Image link above

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Attack on Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941

Click on underlined “hot-links”

Cemetery Watchmen

Ashes found in trash led to proper burial

LISTEN, REFLECT, and PRAY

MANSIONS OF THE LORD – United States Military Academy Mens Glee Club

THE NAVY HYMN – United States Naval Academy

Mens Glee Club

ECHO TAPS – United States Marine Corps Band

~~~~~~~~~~

Captain William Edward Nordeen, United States Navy (CLICK ABOVE)

~~~~~~~~~~

(Photo links to Brad’s biography)

~~~~~~~~~~

Men of the USS STARK (FFG – 31) – 17 May 1987 

SN Doran H. Bolduc, Lacey, WARMSA Dexter D. Grissett, Macon, GAFCCS Robert L. Shippee, Adams Center, NYBM1 Braddi O. Brown, Calera, ALFC3 William R. Hansen, Reading, MASMSA Jeffrey C. Sibley, Metairie, LAFC3 Jeffrey L. Calkins, Richfield Springs, NYGMG3 Daniel Homicki, Elizabeth, NJOS3 Lee Stephens, Pemberton, OHSN Mark R. Caouette, Fitchburg, MAOSSN Kenneth D. Janusik, Jr., Clearwater, FLBM2 James R. Stevens, Visalia, CASN John A. Ciletta, Jr.,  Brigantine, NJOS1 Steven E. Kendall, Honolulu, HIET3 Martin J. Supple, Jacksonville, FLSR Brian M. Clinefelter, San Bernardino, CAEMCS Stephen Kiser, Elkhart, INFC1 Gregory L. Tweady, Champaign, ILOS3 Antonio A. Daniels, Greeleyville, SCSM1 Ronnie G. Lockett, Bessemer, ALET3 Kelly R. Quick, Linden, MIET3 Christopher DeAngelis, Dumont, NJGMM1 Thomas J. MacMullen, Darby, PASN Vincent L. Ulmer, Bay Minette, ALIC3 James S. Dunlap, Osceola Mills, PAEW3 Charles T. Moller, Columbus, GAEW3 Joseph P. Watson, Ferndale, MISTGSN Steven T. Erwin,  Troy, MIDS1 Randy E. Pierce, Choctaw, OKET3 Wayne R. Weaver, II, New Bethlehem, PARM2 Jerry Boyd Farr, Charleston, SCSA Jeffrei L. Phelps, Locust Grove, VAOSSN Terrance Weldon, Coram, NYQMCS Vernon T. Foster, Jacksonville, FLGM3 James Plonsky, Van Nuys, CAIC2 Lloyd A. Wilson, Summerville, SC SMSN Earl P. Ryals,  Boca Raton, FL 

~~~~~~~~~~

Click on the patch (scroll down for the full report)

Casualties of the 30 July 1987 “Desert Duck” crash Lt. William E. Ramsburg, 31, of Scotland, S.D., the pilot; Lt. (j.g.) James F. Lazevnick, 25, of Waldorf, MD. the co-pilot, Radioman 2nd Class Albert B. Duparl of Saint Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Air Force Lt. Col. Horace S. Gentle, 44, of Mooresville, N.C., a staff officer with the U.S. Central Command.

~~~~~~~~~~

Petty Officer Shields Medal of Honor Citation (link)


USS MARVIN SHIELDS (FF – 1066) Association (link)

~~~~~~~~~~

Photo link above

~~~~~~~~~~

LCU – 1500 – CLICK ON IMAGE

DEDICATED to the MEMORY of the
CREW of LCU-1500 KILLED IN ACTION in VIETNAM

* 28 February 1968 *

RMSN K. L. Cook

* 27 February 1969 *

BMC Donald J. Fisher, EN1 Bert E. Burton, EM1 Cecil F. Bush, CS2 Marvin D. Avery, RM2 David W. Hawryshko, QM3 Earnest J. Buckelew, GMG3 Ronald J. Gebbie, BM3 Donald M. Horton, BM3 Ronald P. Yuhas, FN Joseph F. Burinda, SN Bruno W. Demata, SN Craig E. Swagler, FN Charles A. Tavares

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Seaman James Burkhart, United States Navy – USS STERETT (CG – 31)

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Click above to learn more regarding America’s Mighty Warriors!

Ed “Too Tall” Freeman, United States Army – Congressional Medal of Honor recipient (CLICK ABOVE)

~~~~~~~~~~

Captain Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr., Medical Corps, United States Navy – recipient Bronze Star wtih Combat “V” for Valor (OPERATION TORCH – 8 November 1942) (CLICK ABOVE)

CASABLANCA 1942

~~~~~~~~~~

GARDEN OF STONES

LISTEN, REFLECT, and PRAY

MANSIONS OF THE LORD (Ronan Tynan – click on gray dot with white right pointing arrow next to Ronan’s photo)

Minstrel Boy (John McDermott)

THE NAVY HYMN

ECHO TAPS

In Memory of America – A Robert Hefner illustration

~~~~~~~~~~

IN MEMORY OF THE MEN OF USS INDIANAPOLIS (CA – 35) (CLICK ON IMAGE)

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Second Class Petty Officer  Michael Monsoor, United States Navy – recipient Congressional Medal of Honor (CLICK ON IMAGE)

Second Class Petty Officer Michael Monsoor – CLICK ON IMAGE

~~~~~~~~~~

Click on the illustration above for Lieutenant Murphy’s Medal of Honor Citation

~~~~~~~~~~

May the road rise up to meet you, may the wind ever be at your back,
May you find old friends waiting to greet you, there on the outside track.
We’re gathered together old times to remember, ’tis but for ourselves we would grieve,
So we’ll sing you a chorus and bid you farewell – fair winds and a following sea.

We’ll sing of ‘The Leaf’ and ‘The Parting Glass’, we’ll raise up our voices in song,
No sadness today for those who have passed, we celebrate with a voices glad and strong.
A catch in the throat, a tear in the eye, but no funeral dirge will this be,
We’ll roar ‘Auld Lang Syne’ as a victory song – fair winds and a following sea.

And those of us left here will miss a true friend, who shared with us good times and bad, Raising a glass to your memory we’ll say: “We’ve known you – why should we be sad?”
We honor a life that was lived to the full, we honor a spirit, now free.
You’ll long be remembered, whenever we say: “Fair winds and a following sea!”

Hennesey was one of my dad’s

(Navy Doctor, Captain Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr.)

favorite T.V. shows.

Click on the scene for more…

Bobby Darin at piano, Jackie Cooper as Hennesey, Abby Dalton as Nurse Hale

MEMORIAL DAY 2010

Saturday, 29 May 2010

AMAZING GRACE – TAPS

Norman Rockwell – “Mending the Flag” 27 May 1922) (CLICK ON IMAGE)

MEMORIAL DAY 2010 (click here)

Sergeant of Marines Timothy Joseph Harrington spent nine-hours in constructing the post linked above – no better place on the Internet paying proper respect!

Cemetery Watchmen

Ashes found in trash led to proper burial

LISTEN, REFLECT, and PRAY

MANSIONS OF THE LORD

THE NAVY HYMN

ECHO TAPS

~~~~~~~~~~

Captain William Edward Nordeen, United States Navy (CLICK ABOVE)

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Man of  Honor – Navy Diver Second Class Petty Officer Robert Dean Stethem – United States Navy (CLICK ON IMAGE)

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Rev., Dr. Bradford Edward Ableson, Captain United States Navy (CLICK ABOVE)

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Men of the USS STARK (FFG – 31) – 17 May 1987

(click here)

USS Stark casualties
SN Doran H. Bolduc,
Lacey, WA
RMSA Dexter D. Grissett,
Macon, GA
FCCS Robert L. Shippee,
Adams Center, NY
BM1 Braddi O. Brown,
Calera, AL
FC3 William R. Hansen,
Reading, MA
SMSA Jeffrey C. Sibley,
Metairie, LA
FC3 Jeffrey L. Calkins,
Richfield Springs, NY
GMG3 Daniel Homicki,
Elizabeth, NJ
OS3 Lee Stephens,
Pemberton, OH
SN Mark R. Caouette,
Fitchburg, MA
OSSN Kenneth D. Janusik, Jr.,
Clearwater, FL
BM2 James R. Stevens,
Visalia, CA
SN John A. Ciletta, Jr., †
Brigantine, NJ
OS1 Steven E. Kendall,
Honolulu, HI
ET3 Martin J. Supple,
Jacksonville, FL
SR Brian M. Clinefelter,
San Bernardino, CA
EMCS Stephen Kiser,
Elkhart, IN
FC1 Gregory L. Tweady,
Champaign, IL
OS3 Antonio A. Daniels,
Greeleyville, SC
SM1 Ronnie G. Lockett,
Bessemer, AL
ET3 Kelly R. Quick,
Linden, MI
ET3 Christopher DeAngelis, †
Dumont, NJ
GMM1 Thomas J. MacMullen,
Darby, PA
SN Vincent L. Ulmer,
Bay Minette, AL
IC3 James S. Dunlap,
Osceola Mills, PA
EW3 Charles T. Moller,
Columbus, GA
EW3 Joseph P. Watson,
Ferndale, MI
STGSN Steven T. Erwin, †
Troy, MI
DS1 Randy E. Pierce,
Choctaw, OK
ET3 Wayne R. Weaver, II,
New Bethlehem, PA
RM2 Jerry Boyd Farr,
Charleston, SC
SA Jeffrei L. Phelps,
Locust Grove, VA
OSSN Terrance Weldon,
Coram, NY
QMCS Vernon T. Foster,
Jacksonville, FL
GM3 James Plonsky,
Van Nuys, CA
IC2 Lloyd A. Wilson,
Summerville, SC
SMSN Earl P. Ryals, †
Boca Raton, FL

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Casualties of the 30 July 1987 “Desert Duck” crash

Lt. William E. Ramsburg, 31, of Scotland, S.D., the pilot; Lt. (j.g.) James F. Lazevnick, 25, of Waldorf, MD. the co-pilot, Radioman 2nd Class Albert B. Duparl of Saint Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Air Force Lt. Col. Horace S. Gentle, 44, of Mooresville, N.C., a staff officer with the U.S. Central Command.

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Marvin Glenn Shields, Consttuctionman Third Class Petty Officer – Congressional Medal of Honor recipient (CLICK ABOVE)

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LCU – 1500 – CLICK ON IMAGE

DEDICATED to the MEMORY of the
CREW of LCU-1500 KILLED IN ACTION in VIETNAM

* 28 February 1968 *

RMSN K. L. Cook

* 27 February 1969 *

BMC Donald J. Fisher
EN1 Bert E. Burton
EM1 Cecil F. Bush
CS2 Marvin D. Avery
RM2 David W. Hawryshko
QM3 Earnest J. Buckelew
GMG3 Ronald J. Gebbie
BM3 Donald M. Horton
BM3 Ronald P. Yuhas
FN Joseph F. Burinda
SN Bruno W. Demata
SN Craig E. Swagler
FN Charles A. Tavares

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Seaman James Burkhart, United States Navy – USS STERETT (CG – 31)

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Ed “Too Tall” Freeman, United States Army – Congressional Medal of Honor recipient (CLICK ABOVE)

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Captain Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr., Medical Corps, United States Navy – recipient Bronze Star wtih Combat “V” for Valor (OPERATION TORCH – 8 November 1942) (CLICK ABOVE)

CASABLANCA 1942

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GARDEN OF STONES

LISTEN, REFLECT, and PRAY

MANSIONS OF THE LORD (Ronan Tynan – click on gray dot with white right pointing arrow next to Ronan’s photo)

Minstrel Boy (John McDermott)

THE NAVY HYMN

ECHO TAPS

MORE (MILlblogging.com)

In Memory of America - A Robert Hefner illustration (CLICK ON IMAGE)

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IN MEMORY OF THE MEN OF USS INDIANAPOLIS (CA – 35) (CLICK ON IMAGE)

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Second Class Petty Officer (SEAL) Michael Monsoor, United States Navy – recipient Congressional Medal of Honor (CLICK ON IMAGE)

Second Class Petty Officer (SEAL) Michael Monsoor – CLICK ON IMAGE

moore.jpg

602470_180_art_R0.jpg

May the road rise up to meet you, may the wind ever be at your back,
May you find old friends waiting to greet you, there on the outside track.
We’re gathered together old times to remember, ’tis but for ourselves we would grieve,
So we’ll sing you a chorus and bid you farewell – fair winds and a following sea.

We’ll sing of ‘The Leaf’ and ‘The Parting Glass’, we’ll raise up our voices in song,
No sadness today for those who have passed, we celebrate with a voices glad and strong.
A catch in the throat, a tear in the eye, but no funeral dirge will this be,
We’ll roar ‘Auld Lang Syne’ as a victory song – fair winds and a following sea.

And those of us left here will miss a true friend, who shared with us good times and bad, Raising a glass to your memory we’ll say: “We’ve known you – why should we be sad?”
We honor a life that was lived to the full, we honor a spirit, now free.
You’ll long be remembered, whenever we say: “Fair winds and a following sea!”

SOETORO-OBAMA’S TREASON!

Saturday, 8 May 2010

A Robert Hefner illustration

JAG HUNTER here:

SOETORO-OBAMA commits an Act of War–TREASON– against the United States of America forcibly resisting the United States Constitution by successfully installing a rival, unconstitutional government.

Navy Captain, Doctor Walter Francis Fitzpatrick, Jr. could have delivered SOETORO-OBAMA at the Mare Island Naval Hospital in the day and still SOETORO-OBAMA is guilty of TREASON in this day.

SOETORO-OBAMA’s true status as illegal-alien only heightens and enlivens STEVE’S TREASON (click here).

Here endth the lesson.